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2 HIV Negative Gay Men?

Nov 30, 2018

Hey, I am a 19 year old African American, Im Gay , I had had unprotected sex A Year Ago with a young man who is HIV Negative (-) , I just wanted to know if 2 HIV Negative Men have Unprotected Sex Can they Get HIV. I have not had any sex with him or anyone else Spence then

Thank You I Hope that you can Help me because this has been on my Mind for a YEAR now . Everyday Ive had Anxiety and think that have HIV.

Response from Mr. Jacobs

Hi there -- I'm so sorry that a sexual encounter has led to a year of anxiety. Ideally sex can be a wonderful way for two people to connect, joy, feel good. But without accurate information, sex can be a source of fear, dread, and hopelessness.

To be clear -- HIV cannot be transmitted by someone who does not have HIV. One must be HIV positive AND have detectable amounts of the virus in their system in order to transmit HIV to another person. You cannot transmit a virus you don't have.

We now know as well as someone who is HIV+, taking medications consistently, and has an undetectable viral load for a sustained period of time cannot transmit HIV either (https://www.preventionaccess.org/). So if you were to have condomless sex with someone who is HIV+ and undetectable, and/or someone who is HIV negative and taking PrEP, then you would be having "protected" sex with these individuals.

I think the reason this gets confusing is partly due to some mis-messaging we (myself included) have given young people over the years. We have tried to be clear that an HIV negative person cannot transmit HIV to others. At the same time, we have told HIV negative people to protect themselves from other HIV negative people because sometimes people who are HIV positive don't know they they have HIV and may honestly (but mistakenly) report to partners they are HIV negative.

If someone has HIV and doesn't know it, they potentially have a high viral load that can transmit HIV to others. So you could meet someone who tells you they are HIV negative, but might not know that they are HIV positive and capable of transmitting HIV to others. That doesn't mean an HIV negative person can transmit HIV, it just means we often don't know our HIV status.

If you live in an area where HIV testing is difficult to access, clinics have limited hours, has racist or homophobic staff, then it's less likely that the people around you are consistently getting tested and are aware of their HIV status. If you live in an area where having sex while HIV positive is a criminal offense, then you will definitely see rates of testing much lower, and people are then less likely to know their true HIV status when they have been told they could face law enforcement for knowing their true status.

I hope this information helps you to relax, and understand that you cannot get HIV from a partner who is truly HIV negative. If you want to be able to enjoy condomless sex without fear of HIV, you may wish to consider using PrEP for HIV protection. To learn more about PrEP visit our page here at The Body (http://www.thebody.com/index/treat/tenofovir_prevention.html) and/or my Facebook "PrEP Facts" group (https://www.facebook.com/groups/PrEPFacts/).



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